Jessica Moody – J.MOODESUK CIC.
I am Jess, I am 26 and have 3 children (one stepchild) and a fiancé. When I was deciding to try and start my own business, I didn’t have the first clue where to start. I was a single mum of 2 and just knew I didn’t want to go back to work and miss out on my youngest's growth. I had no experience other than that I knew I loved helping people and I wanted to do something to make a difference to peoples lives. I initially wanted to set up a play café, but the idea of a mental health café came after having my son. I suffered with PND with him and when I was better I knew that I wanted to help others not feel the way I did.
How Enterprise Exchange helped
Enterprise Exchange helped hugely. Without them I wouldn’t have even got off the ground. They gave me the knowledge and confidence in my business that I needed to make the steps to becoming my own boss. Phil was an amazing support and always gave me tips specific to my business, so that I knew what I was doing when I had to go it alone. I only met Benna once as my son got poorly during the process, but she was a great help too in getting me driven to do the next steps needed without rushing ahead of myself. I can't thank you enough!
How things have progressed
During the process I had set up a website, Facebook and Instagram page, ready for when my business was up and running. I qualified as a CBT Practitioner and I created a logo to get myself known and also handed out business cards where I could. Just before COVID I ran my first event which although not many people showed up, it got my name out there more and gave me the confidence to go for it! Since the process finished I have paid someone to create me a logo and made new business cards and have adjusted my plans and scaled down. I managed to raise just over £1000 from a crowdfunding scheme set up by NatWest. This money is what has allowed me to actually start my business as I had no savings at all.
I have been running free Zoom sessions and got my first client (although not a paying client due to not being registered, but she has agreed that she wants to carry on as a paid customer too). I have purchased a workspace for my garden to run sessions from there. I have added a little candle business as a sideline to start getting my name out elsewhere too, which are calming candles I will also use in my sessions too. I registered yesterday as a CIC and it has already been accepted so I am officially registered and ready to go. Now is time to try and get the clients in!
I am so pleased with how far I have come, although it's been slow and steady, I got the understanding of how to run a business successfully and with a lot of obstacles in the way, with my son being hospitalised and I still managed to get to where I am today!
"Thanks to Thames Valley Housing for allowing me to join a course with Enterprise Exchange, they have changed my life! Without them I would be having to look at going back to a 9-5 job, which would feel impossible for me with an ill child that needs me. They have given me the freedom, the confidence and the knowledge to run my own business and make it a success. Thank you to Phil from Enterprise Exchange, for believing in my idea and helping me to get to a reasonable scale to allow this to happen for me! Truly amazing people! Couldn’t recommend you more!"
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"Thank you again so much for your support along this journey. You truly have changed my life for the better and I am so grateful!"